The Roundup: Publishing News from the Arab World
News and stories with a focus on the publishing industry, education, and
technology from across the Arab world.
ICANN Pushes for Arabic Domains as Internet Usage Increases across Arab World
As internet usage increases across the Arab world, ICANN, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, is advocating for the creation of Arabic domain names in order to strengthen Arabic’s online presence. ICANN is responsible for assigning domain names and its current outreach to the Arab world is part of a global campaign that seeks to break away from the organization’s roots in the United States and to engage other countries and societies with internet usage and regulation. In an interview with CNN’s program Marketplace Middle East, ICANN President Fadi Chehade this new campaign “will unlock the ability of many users to participate in the internet economy.”
EBSCO Publishing Launches an Online Arabic-Language Database
EBSCO Publishing, an online research database, has launched an Arabic-language online database that will feature hundreds of journals and articles by academics from across the Arab world. Arab e-Marefa promotes itself as the “leading source for Arabic-language full-text academic journals” and hosts 910 academic journals and reports, Masters and PhD dissertations, and over 7,000 book reviews. The database was founded by Marefa Company for Digital Content, which claims that to be a company “concerned with the production of Arabic digital knowledge.”
Second Conference of Arab Publishers Association Convenes in Egypt
The Arab Publishers’ Association (APA) held a conference in Alexandria, Egypt to discuss the current challenges facing Arab publishers. The conference, held on 23 and 24 March, featured the title “Knowledge Enablement and the Challenges Facing Arab Publishing” and was attended by eleven Arab countries. According to Ahram Online, the head of the APA, Assem Shalaby, stated that the Arab publishing world has “many challenges, such as the random censorship imposed by some of the Arab governments, the expensive costs and customs, in addition to the absence of a real media that promotes and market books.” The conference also highlighted the need to increase electronic publishing in the Arab world. Adel Khalifa, head of the Arab Union for Electronic Publishing, stated that only 0.4 percent of global electronic publishing is in Arabic.